Today’s News - Wednesday, December 8, 2010
• Parman has some serious doubts about plans to develop Saltworks: "The uphill battle to add density to Bay Area cities reflects widespread reservations about the smart-growth formula, especially when it's imposed without any real sensitivity or imagination" (and despite being led by "smart growth's founding father" Calthorpe).
• Perhaps they should have attended MWA Waterfront Conference in NYC last week, where attendees "represented are the beginnings of the group that must come together with a collective vision...15% does not a social movement make."
• Is northern Spain ready for "the Niemeyer effect"? (ya never know - throw in some Brad Pitt, Graft Architects, and Norman Foster...) + An interesting Q&A with the almost-103-year-old master himself: "Architecture has to be pretty. It has to amaze; to be a masterpiece. I always try to bring beauty and amazement."
• Green light for another phase at Sydney's Central Park: a pair of "as yet unnamed" residential towers (green walls included).
• An eyeful of San Diego Convention Center expansion plans (it might be difficult to keep conventioneers inside with a very cool 5-acre park on the roof!).
• Morgan marvels at St. Florian's bridge pylons that could create a strong architectural identity for Charlotte, which "forever seems to be one of those Sun Belt skylines in search of a city."
• A thoroughly amusing tour of Beekman Tower ('er, 8 Spruce St. now) with Gehry himself: "Look! You can see Connecticut. Sarah Palin could see China!"
• Kamin revisits Stern's "illuminating collection of essays" and ponders "which city is the center of America's architectural universe?" His take: "Bye-bye, 1979...Hey, New York - start spreadin' the news: It's a multi-polar architectural world out there. Deal with it" (ouch!).
• An enlightening video tour of NYC with "lighting urbanist" Schwendinger.
• Waldheim named new consulting Curator of Landscape for Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.
• Architects (2) among the 50 recipients of USA Fellowships for 2010.
• We are truly saddened to hear the news that Worldchanging is closing its doors by the end of the year (and hope their invaluable archives will remain accessible).
• Call for presentations: ASLA 2011 Annual Meeting, "Landscape Architecture Rising." + Call for entries: ASLA 2011 Professional and Student Awards.
• We couldn't resist bringing you The Happy Planet Index (serious info included).
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Protest: High Noon in Redwood City: Despite claims to the contrary, Cargill's Saltworks development is not smart growth...There’s a “build-it-and-transit-will-come” quality...The uphill battle to add density to Bay Area cities reflects widespread reservations about the smart-growth formula, especially when it’s imposed without any real sensitivity or imagination. By John Parman -- Peter Calthorpe [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
The Future Waterfront: MWA Conference 2010: ...the institutions and individuals represented are the beginnings of the group that must come together with a collective vision...already a part of the “15%”...will participate in the movement regardless...leaves the challenge of locating and incorporating the opinions, knowledge, and ideas of the remain 85%. Fifteen percent does not a social movement make. By William Martin -- Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance; Bill McKibben [links]- Urban Omnibus
Is Avilés ready for “the Niemeyer effect”? Its backers range from Brad Pitt to Stephen Hawking, but can a new arts centre in northern Spain really replicate the success of the Guggenheim Bilbao?...Controversy has followed the Centro Cultural Internacional Oscar Niemeyer almost from the start. -- Foster + Partners [images]- The Art Newspaper
“The architect’s role is to fight for a better world&hellip”: Now approaching his 103rd birthday, Niemeyer continues to practise from his office in Rio de Janeiro..."The important thing in architecture is the element of surprise, and that’s what I’ve tried to achieve here [Cultural Centre in Avilés]. Architecture has to be pretty. It has to amaze; to be a masterpiece. I always try to bring beauty and amazement."- The Art Newspaper
Another stage at Sydney’s Central Park meets approval: ...for the second residential stage at the $2 billion development...a pair of buildings designed by Richard Johnson of Johnson Pilton Walker. [images]- Architecture & Design (Australia)
Unveiled: San Diego Convention Center Expansion: Addition by Fentress Architects features a large [5-acre] rooftop park overlooking the bay...Perhaps most notably the project will add 30,000 square feet of new retail along the city's existing bay front promenade... -- Arthur Erickson (1981); Civitas [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
Tryon Bridge Beacons Beckon: Friedrich St. Florian designs a new gateway for Charlotte, but has the city arrived, yet?...has lacked a strong architectural identity. That may change with the construction of the two bridge pylons... By William Morgan [images]- Inform: Architecture + Design in the Mid-Atlantic (Virginia Society of the American Institute of Architects)
Cheek to Cheek With Frank Gehry: Critics and naysayers suggest [he] isn't fit to sharpen his claws on the New York skyline...8 Spruce Street/Beekman Tower...almost wasn't real..."Look! ...you can see the outer harbor!...You can see Connecticut. Sarah Palin could see China!" He stood facing the window, mesmerized like a latter-day Christopher Columbus.- New York Observer
Which city is the center of America's architectural universe? NY, LA, Chicago, or none of the above?...perusing Robert A.M. Stern's illuminating collection of essays, "Architecture on the Edge of Postmodernism"...now, 31 years and a host of changes later, where is he right and where is he off base?...My take on this debate: Bye-bye, 1979...Hey, New York--start spreadin' the news: It's a multi-polar architectural world out there. Deal with it. Bt Blair Kamin- Chicago Tribune
Ian McChesney wins Regent Street contest with 'fork' fish: Made up of more than 1700 forks..."Swimmy"...has been designed "to promote the street as the food quarter of Regent Street’." -- McChesney Architects [images]- The Architects' Journal (UK)
As You Light It: "lighting urbanist" Leni Schwendinger. From the terminals of Port Authority to the brights lights of Time Square and the muted majesty of Bryant Park at night, Schwendinger takes us on an odyssey that explores the unique effects of lighting in the city that doesn't sleep. [video]- Dwell
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Names Charles Waldheim as new consulting Curator of Landscape ...[he] coined the term “landscape urbanism” to describe emerging design practices at the intersection of landscape and contemporary urbanism... -- Urban Agency- Boston Globe
United States Artists announces 50 USA Fellowships for 2010, awarding them with unrestricted grants of $50,000...include cutting-edge experimenters and traditional practitioners from the fields of architecture and design... -- Teddy Cruz; Greg Lynn; David Reinfurt- United States Artists
Thank You for Seven Years of Worldchanging: Alex Steffen and Jamais Cascio started Worldchanging with the intention of providing access to the tools, models and ideas for building a better future...The organization is taking steps to close its doors and dissolve as a 501c3 nonprofit organization by the end of 2010.- WorldChanging
Call for presentations for ASLA for 2011 Annual Meeting: "Landscape Architecture Rising: Knowledge Vision Leadership"...October 30-November 2 in San Diego; deadline: January 21, 2011- American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Call for entries: ASLA 2011 Professional and Student Awards; registration deadline: February 25, 2011, for Professional Awards; May 6, 2011, for Student Awards- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Happiness Comes at a Price: Should we be measuring our world by something other than GDP and income levels? ...demographers have given it go...The results of several studies are gathered in The Happy Planet Index. By Cliff Kuang [images]- Fast Company
Best Architecture Books of 2010; Ten books pointing the way to larger professional horizons. By Norman Weinstein -- Eric J. Cesal; Thomas Fisher; Mark Garcia; Philip Jodidio; Charles Jencks/Edwin Heathcote; Giovanni Curatola; George Ranalli; James P. Cramer/Jane Paradise Wolford; etc.- ArchNewsNow
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